Obviously, my dad is feeling better. Geez, give the man some energy, and he goes right for my jugular. I mean, here I was all at this happy place where I actually *liked* my parents, I was looking forward to going home in August, and he has me so mad that I can't stop shaking. I am perfectly willing to listen his point of view, I really am, but for god sakes, does that mean I have to sit there and let him make all these personal attacks? I mean, would it kill him to admit that I'm not the stupidest person on the face of the earth? How dare *anyone* suggest I don't know anything about history. I didn't sleep through my two master's degrees. I don't come to my opinions about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict by reading cereal boxes. I work hard at educating myself, and damn him all to hell for not recognizing it. I have been struggling with the "middle eastern question" for more than a decade. I put more effort into learning about the world than almost everyone I know. I read, I take classes, I discuss, I contemplate, I work fucking hard. I don't care if he agrees with me, in fact, I know he doesn't and never will, and that's fine, but why is it okay for him to tell me I don't know anything about history, that if I'd ever read anything, I'd know better, and that well, maybe I did read something, but I wasn't capable of understanding it. Would it fucking kill him to admit I'm well-educated and intelligent to boot? Because I am, and I'm not going to let him or anyone else in my family tell me otherwise, because I'm sick of that crap. I'm 35 years old, and I am not going to let them make me feel inferior or stupid or hysterical or any of that. Fuck that.
You know, I am the most stable of all my parents' children. I own a house, I have a great spouse who has a respectable job with a world-renowned research institution, I have a steady job at a research university and am adjunct faculty at a state college to boot. I don't do drugs, I scarcely drink, I don't even do caffeine. I take a minimum of two classes every semester and always have a correspondence course going on top of that. I read probably 5-7 books a week, minimum. I have studied and traveled abroad, and I travel to new places in the U.S. every two or three months. I read newspapers from all over the world, every day. I've formally studied Russian, German, French, Italian and Korean. I have four college degrees. I've always graduated with honors, and I've never gotten a speeding ticket. I do volunteer work at BRI every Friday. I do cool things like play hockey and study rocket science in my spare time. I exercise on a regular basis and understand what a nickelback is. I play half a dozen musical instruments and can sing reasonably well. I've never hit a child. I'm an alternate captain on my hockey team. I vote in almost every election. I know some fantastically intelligent people, and many of them consider me a friend.
But I still feel like a complete and utter failure. What's wrong with this picture?